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Guildford Borough Council

Submission Local Plan: Strategy and Sites - Main Modifications

Submission Local Plan: Strategy and Sites - Main Modifications - Part 1: Policies

Policy ID2: Supporting the Department for Transport’s “Road Investment Strategy”

Introduction

4.6.12 Following the enactment of The Infrastructure Act 2015, the Department for Transport published in March 2015 the Road Investment Strategy (RIS) for the 2015/16 - 2019/20 Road Period. From 1 April 2015, the Secretary of State for Transport has granted Highways England a licence as a strategic highways company to be the highway authority, traffic authority and street authority for the Strategic Road Network (SRN).

4.6.13 The RIS includes a long term funding commitment by government to support delivery of the programme. This is an important change of approach, which involves ring-fencing investment for the Strategic Road Network in a way that takes it outside of the normal decisions on departmental budgets. This means that the schemes set out in the RIS have access to committed funding, allowing them to enter construction during Road Period 1 (2015/16 to 2019/20) or be developed into schemes for construction in Road Period 2 (2020/21 to 2024/25). This represents a level of commitment well beyond the level previously associated with investment on the Strategic Road Network.

4.6.14 Within Guildford borough, three schemes have been identified in the RIS;

Schemes with construction anticipated to commerce in Road Period 1 (2015/16 to 2019/20):

  • M25 Junctions 10-16 - upgrading the M25 between junction 10 (A3) and junction 16 (M40) through a mixture of enhancements, including hard shoulder running between junctions 15 and 16, as well as four-lane through-junction running between junctions 10 and 12.
  • M25 Junction 10/A3 Wisley interchange - improvement of the Wisley interchange to allow free-flowing movement in all directions, together with improvements to the neighbouring Painshill interchange on the A3 to improve safety and congestion across the two sites.

Scheme with construction anticipated to commence in Road Period 2 (2020/21 to 2024/25):

  • A3 Guildford - improving the A3 in Guildford from the A320 to the Hogs Back junction with the A31, with associated safety improvements.

4.6.15 The Council has worked and will continue to work closely with Highways England to tailor its development management processes, including for allocated strategic sites, with Highways England's emerging schemes and their proposed timing and phasing. This will ensure that the assumptions used in developer's transport assessments are robust. The timing and phasing of the delivery of Highways England's emerging schemes will be key to addressing the existing peak hour congestion that often occurs on the Strategic Road Network.

POLICY ID2: Supporting the Department for Transport's "Road Investment Strategy"

(1) Guildford Borough Council is committed to working with Highways England to facilitate major, long-term improvements to the A3 trunk road and M25 motorway in terms of both capacity and safety, as mandated by the Department for Transport's "Road Investment Strategy". As such, promoters of sites close to the A3 and M25 and strategic sites will need to take account of any emerging proposals by Highways England or any other licenced strategic highway authority appointed by the Secretary of State under the Infrastructure Act 2015.

(2) In the event that there is a material delay in the anticipated completion and or a reduction in scope of the A3 Guildford (A320 Stoke interchange junction to A31 Hog's Back junction) "Road Investment Strategy" scheme from that assumed in plan-making, or cancellation of the scheme, Guildford Borough Council will review its transport evidence base to investigate the consequent cumulative impacts of approved developments and Local Plan growth including site allocations on the safe operation and the performance of the Local Road Networks and the Strategic Road Network. In the case of material delay in the anticipated completion and or a reduction in scope in the A3 Guildford scheme, the review will consider the period up to the revised date of completion of the scheme. This review will be undertaken with input as appropriate from Surrey County Council and Highways England or any other licenced strategic highway authority appointed by the Secretary of State under the Infrastructure Act 2015. The outcome of this review will determine whether development can continue to be completed in accordance with the Local Plan trajectory or will determine whether there needs to be a review of the Local Plan.

 

Reasoned justification

4.6.16 The implementation of the three RIS schemes during the Plan period, alongside other critical infrastructure, is required in order to be able to accommodate future planned growth both outside and within the borough. It is therefore important that the promoters of sites close to the A3 and M25 and strategic sites work closely with Highways England to ensure that their layout and access arrangement(s) are consistent with Highways England's emerging schemes.

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4.6.18 The A3 Guildford scheme is subject to feasibility study and then progression through Highways England's Project Control Framework during Road Period 1. This may require consequential alterations or improvements to junctions that either connect with the Strategic Road Network or are affected by changes in traffic flows.

4.6.18a The evidence at the time of the Examination of the Local Plan was that, without the implementation of the A3 Guildford scheme, the cumulative impacts of the quantum and distribution of development in the Local Plan could be considered to become severe during the second half of the plan period. Nevertheless, the evidence also indicates that individually, site allocations may be able to be occupied in whole or substantial part without creating a severe impact on the Strategic Road Network as there are potential alternative transport measures that may reduce or limit the impact of additional traffic on the A3. A review will determine whether the proposed transport measures or additional transport measures can mitigate the cumulative impacts of development traffic on the A3 either during the period that the A3 Guildford scheme is delayed, in response to a reduction in its scope or in the event of its cancellation. If a review determines that transport measures are not able to mitigate a severe impact on the A3 then a review of the Local Plan is likely to be required.

4.6.19 The RIS schemes are included in the Infrastructure Schedule at Appendix C which sets out the key infrastructure requirements on which the delivery of the Plan depends. The Guildford Borough Transport Strategy sets out the programme of transport improvement schemes promoted by Guildford Borough Council, and includes all the key infrastructure requirements including the RIS schemes.

Key Evidence

  • Road Investment Strategy: for the 2015/16 - 2019/20 Road Period (Department for Transport, 2015)
  • Guildford Borough Proposed Submission Local Plan "June 2016": Strategic Highway Assessment Report (Surrey County Council, 2016)
  • Guildford Borough Transport Strategy 2017 (Guildford Borough Council, 2017)

 

Monitoring Indicators

Indicator

Target

Data source

Implementation of the Department for Transport's "Road Investment Strategy"

The three schemes on the Strategic Road Network within Guildford borough, as identified in the Road Investment Strategy for the 2015/16 - 2019/20 Road Period, are implemented during the Local Plan period to 2034

Future issues of the Road Investment Strategy

Government funding statements